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Ed Sheeran

Language still focus of broadcast policy

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Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi says Māori radio and television along with other parts of public broadcasting have been underfunded and left to wither over the past decade.

But in the face of a challenge from Paakiwaha host Claudette Hauiti, he was unwilling to concede the crown has an obligation to fund Māori broadcasting for more than the promotion of Māori language and culture.

Mr Faafoi has added a Māori and a Pasifika voice to a ministerial advisory panel on funding of public broadcasting.

Māori Broadcasting Minister Nanaia Mahuta has also asked her Māori Development Ministry to review Māori broadcast needs.

He says that's sufficient to ensure government is doing enough to meet its obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi.

"I believe we are because of the network of stations we are on right now and also the likes of Māori Television, because they are the public broadcasting assets we have to make sure the language and culture is not only protected but also an outlet for Māori broadcasters to take part in the broadcasting market," Minister Faafoi says.

He says that’s in line with the vision of the late Parekura Horomia who in setting up Māori Television emphasised it was about creating a place for the protection and promotion of Māori language and culture.

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